[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 37, Volume 1]
[Revised as of July 1, 1999]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 37CFR201.20]

[Page 382-385]
 
             TITLE 37--PATENTS, TRADEMARKS, AND COPYRIGHTS
 
                                CONGRESS
 
PART 201--GENERAL PROVISIONS--Table of Contents
 
Sec. 201.20  Methods of affixation and positions of the copyright notice on various types of works.

    (a) General. (1) This section specifies examples of methods of 
affixation and positions of the copyright notice on various types of 
works that will satisfy the notice requirement of section 401(c) of 
title 17 of the United States Code, as amended by Pub. L. 94-553. A 
notice considered ``acceptable'' under this regulation shall be 
considered to satisfy the requirement of that section that it be 
``affixed to the copies in such manner and location as to give 
reasonable notice of the claim of copyright.'' As provided by that 
section, the examples specified in this regulation shall not be 
considered exhaustive of methods of affixation and positions giving 
reasonable notice of the claim of copyright.
    (2) The provisions of this section are applicable to copies publicly 
distributed on or after December 1, 1981. This section does not 
establish any rules concerning the form of the notice or the legal 
sufficiency of particular notices, except with respect to methods of 
affixation and positions of notice. The adequacy or legal sufficiency of 
a copyright notice is determined by the law in effect at the time of 
first publication of the work.
    (b) Definitions. For the purposes of this section:
    (1) The terms audiovisual works, collective works, copies, device, 
fixed, machine, motion picture, pictorial, graphic, and sculptural 
works, and their variant forms, have the meanings given to them in 
section 101 of Title 17.
    (2) Title 17 means title 17 of the United States Code, as amended by 
Pub. L. 94-553.
    (3) In the case of a work consisting preponderantly of leaves on 
which the work is printed or otherwise reproduced on both sides, a 
``page'' is one side of a leaf; where the preponderance of the leaves 
are printed on one side only, the terms ``page'' and ``leaf'' mean the 
same.
    (4) A work is published in book form if the copies embodying it 
consist of multiple leaves bound, fastened, or assembled in a 
predetermined order, as, for example, a volume, booklet, pamphlet, or 
multipage folder. For the purpose of this section, a work need not 
consist of

[[Page 383]]

textual matter in order to be considered published in ``book form.''
    (5) A title page is a page, or two consecutive pages facing each 
other, appearing at or near the front of the copies of a work published 
in book form, on which the complete title of the work is prominently 
stated and on which the names of the author or authors, the name of the 
publisher, the place of publication, or some combination of them, are 
given.
    (6) The meaning of the terms front, back, first, last, and 
following, when used in connection with works published in book form, 
will vary in relation to the physical form of the copies, depending upon 
the particular language in which the work is written.
    (7) In the case of a work published in book form with a hard or soft 
cover, the front page and back page of the copies are the outsides of 
the front and back covers; where there is no cover, the ``front page,'' 
and ``back page'' are the pages visible at the front and back of the 
copies before they are opened.
    (8) A masthead is a body of information appearing in approximately 
the same location in most issues of a newspaper, magazine, journal, 
review, or other periodical or serial, typically containing the title of 
the periodical or serial, information about the staff, periodicity of 
issues, operation, and subscription and editorial policies, of the 
publication.
    (9) A single-leaf work is a work published in copies consisting of a 
single leaf, including copies on which the work is printed or otherwise 
reproduced on either one side or on both sides of the leaf, and also 
folders which, without cutting or tearing the copies, can be opened out 
to form a single leaf. For the purpose of this section, a work need not 
consist of textual matter in order to be considered a ``single-leaf 
work.''
    (c) Manner of affixation and position generally. (1) In all cases 
dealt with in this section, the acceptability of a notice depends upon 
its being permanently legible to an ordinary user of the work under 
normal conditions of use, and affixed to the copies in such manner and 
position that, when affixed, it is not concealed from view upon 
reasonable examination.
    (2) Where, in a particular case, a notice does not appear in one of 
the precise locations prescribed in this section but a person looking in 
one of those locations would be reasonably certain to find a notice in 
another somewhat different location, that notice will be acceptable 
under this section.
    (d) Works published in book form. In the case of works published in 
book form, a notice reproduced on the copies in any of the following 
positions is acceptable:
    (1) The title page, if any;
    (2) The page immediately following the title page, if any;
    (3) Either side of the front cover, if any; or, if there is no front 
cover, either side of the front leaf of the copies;
    (4) Either side of the back cover, if any; or, if there is no back 
cover, either side of the back leaf of the copies;
    (5) The first page of the main body of the work;
    (6) The last page of the main body of the work;
    (7) Any page between the front page and the first page of the main 
body of the work, if:
    (i) There are no more than ten pages between the front page and the 
first page of the main body of the work; and
    (ii) The notice is reproduced prominently and is set apart from 
other matter on the page where it appears;
    (8) Any page between the last page of the main body of the work and 
back page, if:
    (i) There are no more than ten pages between the last page of the 
main body of the work and the back page; and
    (ii) The notice is reproduced prominently and is set apart from the 
other matter on the page where it appears.
    (9) In the case of a work published as an issue of a periodical or 
serial, in addition to any of the locations listed in paragraphs (d) (1) 
through (8) of this section, a notice is acceptable if it is located:
    (i) As a part of, or adjacent to, the masthead;
    (ii) On the page containing the masthead if the notice is reproduced 
prominently and is set apart from the other matter appearing on the 
page; or
    (iii) Adjacent to a prominent heading, appearing at or near the 
front of the issue, containing the title of the

[[Page 384]]

periodical or serial and any combination of the volume and issue number 
and date of the issue.
    (10) In the case of a musical work, in addition to any of the 
locations listed in paragraphs (d) (1) through (9) of this section, a 
notice is acceptable if it is located on the first page of music.
    (e) Single-leaf works. In the case of single-leaf works, a notice 
reproduced on the copies anywhere on the front or back of the leaf is 
acceptable.
    (f) Contributions to collective works. For a separate contribution 
to a collective work to be considered to ``bear its own notice of 
copyright,'' as provided by 17 U.S.C. 404, a notice reproduced on the 
copies in any of the following positions is acceptable:
    (1) Where the separate contribution is reproduced on a single page, 
a notice is acceptable if it appears:
    (i) Under the title of the contribution on that page;
    (ii) Adjacent to the contribution; or
    (iii) On the same page if, through format, wording, or both, the 
application of the notice to the particular contribution is made clear;
    (2) Where the separate contribution is reproduced on more than one 
page of the collective work, a notice is acceptable if it appears:
    (i) Under a title appearing at or near the beginning of the 
contribution;
    (ii) On the first page of the main body of the contribution;
    (iii) Immediately following the end of the contribution; or
    (iv) On any of the pages where the contribution appears, if:
    (A) The contribution is reproduced on no more than twenty pages of 
the collective work;
    (B) The notice is reproduced prominently and is set apart from other 
matter on the page where it appears; and
    (C) Through format, wording, or both, the application of the notice 
to the particular contribution is made clear;
    (3) Where the separate contribution is a musical work, in addition 
to any of the locations listed in paragraphs (f) (1) and (2) of this 
section, a notice is acceptable if it is located on the first page of 
music of the contribution;
    (4) As an alternative to placing the notice on one of the pages 
where a separate contribution itself appears, the contribution is 
considered to ``bear its own notice'' if the notice appears clearly in 
juxtaposition with a separate listing of the contribution by title, or 
if the contribution is untitled, by a description reasonably identifying 
the contribution:
    (i) On the page bearing the copyright notice for the collective work 
as a whole, if any; or
    (ii) In a clearly identified and readily-accessible table of 
contents or listing of acknowledgements appearing near the front or back 
of the collective work as a whole.
    (g) Works reproduced in machine-readable copies. For works 
reproduced in machine-readable copies (such as magnetic tapes or disks, 
punched cards, or the like, from which the work cannot ordinarily be 
visually perceived except with the aid of a machine or device,\1\ each 
of the following constitute examples of acceptable methods of affixation 
and position of notice:
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    \1\ Works published in a form requiring the use of a machine or 
device for purposes of optical enlargement (such as film, filmstrips, 
slide films, and works published in any variety of microform) and works 
published in visually perceptible form but used in connection with 
optical scanning devices, are not within this category.
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    (1) A notice embodied in the copies in machine-readable form in such 
a manner that on visually perceptible printouts it appears either with 
or near the title, or at the end of the work;
    (2) A notice that is displayed at the user's terminal at sign on;
    (3) A notice that is continuously on terminal display; or
    (4) A legible notice reproduced durably, so as to withstand normal 
use, on a gummed or other label securely affixed to the copies or to a 
box, reel, cartridge, cassette, or other container used as a permanent 
receptacle for the copies.
    (h) Motion pictures and other audiovisual works. (1) The following 
constitute examples of acceptable methods of affixation and positions of 
the copyright notice on motion pictures and other audiovisual works: A 
notice that is embodied in the copies by a photomechanical or electronic 
process, in such a position that it ordinarily would

[[Page 385]]

appear whenever the work is performed in its entirety, and that is 
located:
    (i) With or near the title;
    (ii) With the cast, credits, and similar information;
    (iii) At or immediately following the beginning of the work; or
    (iv) At or immediately preceding the end of the work.
    (2) In the case of an untitled motion picture or other audiovisual 
work whose duration is sixty seconds or less, in addition to any of the 
locations listed in paragraph (h)(1) of this section, a notice that is 
embodied in the copies by a photomechanical or electronic process, in 
such a position that it ordinarily would appear to the projectionist or 
broadcaster when preparing the work for performance, is acceptable if it 
is located on the leader of the film or tape immediately preceding the 
beginning of the work.
    (3) In the case of a motion picture or other audiovisual work that 
is distributed to the public for private use, the notice may be affixed, 
in addition to the locations specified in paragraph (h)(1) of this 
section, on the housing or container, if it is a permanent receptacle 
for the work.
    (i) Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works. The following 
constitute examples of acceptable methods of affixation and positions of 
the copyright notice on various forms of pictorial, graphic, and 
sculptural works:
    (1) Where a work is reproduced in two-dimensional copies, a notice 
affixed directly or by means of a label cemented, sewn, or otherwise 
attached durably, so as to withstand normal use, of the front or back of 
the copies, or to any backing, mounting, matting, framing, or other 
material to which the copies are durably attached, so as to withstand 
normal use, or in which they are permanently housed, is acceptable.
    (2) Where a work is reproduced in three-dimensional copies, a notice 
affixed directly or by means of a label cemented, sewn, or otherwise 
attached durably, so as to withstand normal use, to any visible portion 
of the work, or to any base, mounting, framing, or other material on 
which the copies are durably attached, so as to withstand normal use, or 
in which they are permanently housed, is acceptable.
    (3) Where, because of the size or physical characteristics of the 
material in which the work is reproduced in copies, it is impossible or 
extremely impracticable to affix a notice to the copies directly or by 
means of a durable label, a notice is acceptable if it appears on a tag 
that is of durable material, so as to withstand normal use, and that is 
attached to the copy with sufficient durability that it will remain with 
the copy while it is passing through its normal channels of commerce.
    (4) Where a work is reproduced in copies consisting of sheet-like or 
strip material bearing multiple or continuous reproductions of the work, 
the notice may be applied:
    (i) To the reproduction itself;
    (ii) To the margin, selvage, or reverse side of the material at 
frequent and regular intervals; or
    (iii) If the material contains neither a selvage nor a reverse side, 
to tags or labels, attached to the copies and to any spools, reels, or 
containers housing them in such a way that a notice is visible while the 
copies are passing through their normal channels of commerce.
    (5) If the work is permanently housed in a container, such as a game 
or puzzle box, a notice reproduced on the permanent container is 
acceptable.


(17 U.S.C. 401, 702)

[46 FR 58312, Dec. 1, 1981]